VITAS Healthcare Appoints Mike Blankenship to Vice President of Operations in Midwest US
August 12, 2020
HOUSTON, TX — Mike Blankenship, an experienced healthcare executive who launched his career as a VITAS hospice nurse in the late 1990s, has returned to the nation’s leading provider of end-of-life care as vice president of operations in the company’s four-state Midwest region.
Blankenship oversees patient care teams that provide hospice care throughout Texas, Missouri, Kansas, and in select areas of Illinois.
Blankenship launched his hospice career with VITAS as a continuous care licensed vocational nurse (LVN) while he was studying for his bachelor's degree in nursing in San Antonio.
“My formative years at VITAS shaped the course of my career and taught me about 99% of what I know about hospice today,” he says. “After I got into nursing in college, it didn’t take long to realize that hospice makes a real difference in the quality of life of patients and their families. It truly is a worthy profession.”
After graduating in 2000 from the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Blankenship stayed with VITAS in various roles in San Antonio and Houston, including on-call, triage, and inpatient hospice registered nurse (RN); nurse case manager; admissions nurse; team manager and patient care administrator.
He left VITAS in 2007 to step into leadership roles at other healthcare systems, eventually moving into roles as area executive director and area vice president. From 1992-98, he also served as a US Army medic and vocational nurse.
“I’ve always recognized VITAS as the leader in the industry,” says the new vice president, “and I’m proud to be back where my hospice career began over 22 years ago.”